Our View: Zimmerman still deserves a fair trial

DKS Editors

George Zimmerman is now a household name — and not in a good way. Zimmerman will now forever be known as the man who, in February 2012, shot and killed Trayvon Martin, a 17-year-old unarmed African-American male.

In recent months, the subject of racial profiling and stereotypes has prevailed in media coverage because of Martin’s death. Unlike Zimmerman, Trayvon Martin’s name will be remembered for other reasons and categorized with similar victims from the past.

Martin has been compared to: Emmett Till, a 14-year-old African-American male who was murdered in Mississippi in 1955 after reportedly flirting with a white woman; Rodney King, a black male victim of police brutality in 1991; and Amadou Diallo, an unarmed 23-year-old Guinean immigrant who was shot 41 times and killed in 1999 by four New York City police.

It took months for the police to finally indict Zimmerman, and last week he was arrested on charges of second-degree murder. A few days after his arrest, Zimmerman was able to get out of jail on bail and is now on house arrest.

A lot of people have voiced their opinions about Zimmerman’s release, and they are unhappy with this recent development. They’ve made up their minds about Zimmerman, and any opinion other than their own doesn’t matter.

Yes, Zimmerman took a young life for questionable reasons, and he should face a judge and jury for that. However, he deserves a fair trial just like anyone else. Martin’s death is a tragedy, and the issue it raises belongs in the public eye and needs to be addressed.

With that said, the facts and the evidence should still be the deciding factor in the Martin case — not the opinions, emotions, and biases of everyone else.

The above editorial is the consensus opinion of the Daily Kent Stater editorial board.